Clariant, Chemtex join forces to boost biofuel production in China

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Clariant’s Business Line Biofuels and Derivatives has formed a strategic partnership with Chemtex Global Corporation (Chemtex) for the realisation of second-generation biofuels.

The announcement was made on 15 August during a joint presentation at the 7th Asia-Pacific Biomass Utilisation Summit in Guangzhou.

Under the partnership, the two firms will collaborate to market and sell Clariant’s sunliquid® technology licenses, as well as services and supplies for advanced biofuel plants in China.

As the largest passenger car market in the world, the environmental impact posed by greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in transport has become a major challenge in China. In 2017, the State Council of the People’s Republic of China endorsed a new strategic plan to further utilise bioethanol derived from agricultural residue as petrol for motor vehicles.

Under the nationwide blending mandate proposed, all petrol used for motor vehicles will need to contain bioethanol as an additive. Clariant is fully supporting the rollout of the mandate.

Christian Librera, Clariant’s head of Business Line Biofuels and Derivatives, said: “China represents one of the key growth markets for Clariant.

“This strategic partnership with Chemtex is another milestone reached in our continued pursuit for the corporate goal of adding value with sustainability.

“It is also pivotal in further strengthening our position in the national 2G biofuels market by providing our customers a comprehensive solution for the development, construction, and commissioning of their commercial-scale cellulosic ethanol plants in China along the ‘green’ development path of the country.”

The combined offerings of Clariant and Chemtex will provide a comprehensive package of 2G ethanol technology licenses and engineering procurement construction (EPC) services, enabling customers in China to design, build and operate their own full-scale plants.

While Clariant will offer its sunliquid technology licenses, technical services and the supply of starter cultures from its proprietary enzyme and yeast platform, Chemtex will be responsible for EPC.

“As a global industrial solution provider in biofuels, Chemtex has over 40 years of experience in the Chinese market,” said Sean Ma, chairman and CEO of Chemtex.

“Following the project with Anhui Guozhen signed at the beginning of this year, we’re delighted to collaborate with Clariant in this strategic partnership.

“Within this collaboration, both companies will join forces to support our potential customers in China with the development and EPC services of commercial plants for the production of cellulosic ethanol from agricultural residues.”

In January, the first license agreement for Clairant’s sunliquid technology in China was signed between Clariant and its partners Chemtex and Anhui Guozhen, a local green energy firm.

Under the agreement, a full-scale commercial plant with a 50,000-ton annual capacity for the production of cellulosic ethanol leveraging Clariant’s sunliquid technology is planned to be built in Fuyang city in the Anhui province.

Globally, there are three other license agreements with renowned industry players in Slovakia, Poland and Bulgaria.